Cheteshwar Pujara and Rishabh Pant held the fort after early trouble on Day 3 of the ongoing fifth Test against England at Edgbaston in Birmingham. After bundling out the hosts for 284, the tourists yet again had a terrible start as they lost two wickets for just 43 in 17.3 overs.

Then, Virat Kohli and Pujara stabilised the innings by forming a crucial partnership for the third wicket. The pair added 32 runs with out-of-form Kohli looking positive to cruise through. However, his bad patch continued as a ripper from Ben Stokes in the 30th over got rid of Kohli for 20.

Before England could capitalise further, Pujara (50 no) and Pant (30 no) partnered for another vital stand and took past the lead beyond 250 runs. The duo added an unbeaten stand of 50 runs for the fourth wicket to put India on top at stumps on Day 3. Pujara got to his comeback half-century in the final over of the day as India are 257 runs ahead.

Earlier, Jonny Bairstow bailed out England through his scintillating century. The right-handed batter, who got indulged in a heated exchange with former skipper Kohli, went on to smash Indian bowlers to put them under pressure.

Bairstow reached the triple figure mark off just 119 deliveries, which was his fifth hundred of the year. His splendid knock consisted of 14 boundaries and two sixes. Bairstow’s innings came to an end after Mohammed Shami dismissed him for 106. Riding on Bairstow’s hundred, the hosts posted 284 on the board in their first innings.

Here is how Twitter reacted:

That’s Stumps on Day 3 of the Edgbaston Test! @cheteshwar1 (50*) & @RishabhPant17 (30*) remain unbeaten as #TeamIndia stretch their lead to 257 runs. 👌 👌 #ENGvIND

See you tomorrow for Day 4 action.

Scorecard ▶️

— BCCI (@BCCI) July 3, 2022

220+ runs ahead. Pujara s faced 106 balls at the moment. As much as the talk is of exciting batters in test cricket atm,the value of an innings like this shouldn’t be underrated! #INDvENG

— Abhinav Mukund (@mukundabhinav) July 3, 2022

This is great viewing! Jonny Bairstow doing a Rishabh Pant 👏🏽 #ENGvIND

— Wasim Jaffer (@WasimJaffer14) July 3, 2022

Jonny Bairstow’s Strike Rate before Kohli’s Sledging -: 21
Post Sledging – 150

Pujara ki tarah khel rahe thhey, Kohli ne Pant banwa diya bewajah sledge karke #IndvsEng

— Virender Sehwag (@virendersehwag) July 3, 2022

In last 5 years, it is 15th time India fast bowlers have taken all 10 wickets in a Test innings. In the previous 85 years of India’s Test history, this happened only 13 times. #EngvInd

— Mazher Arshad (@MazherArshad) July 3, 2022

The IND-ENG tests over the last 12-15 months (including parts of the series in India), have been hard-fought.

But more often than not IND have found a way out of tricky situations.

One of the key reasons is the Pant-spearheaded lower-middle-order.

— Bharath Ramaraj (@Fancricket12) July 3, 2022

🇮🇳🏏 IMPRESSIVE BATTING! Thanks to Pujara’s steady knock, the lead goes past 2️⃣5️⃣0️⃣ at the end of day three.

🙌 Let’s set a big target, lads!

📸 Getty • #INDvENG #ENGvIND #TeamIndia #BharatArmy

— The Bharat Army (@thebharatarmy) July 3, 2022

STUMPS, DAY 3: #TeamIndia are in command at Edgbaston, with Pujara leading the way with a half-century. 👏

The lead is now 2️⃣5️⃣7️⃣. #ENGvIND | 📸: Getty Images

— SunRisers Hyderabad (@SunRisers) July 3, 2022

Fifty by Cheteshwar Pujara – opened the innings in this Test and put on a resilient show in the 2nd innings. This deserves appreciation, well played Pujara!

— Mufaddal Vohra (@mufaddal_vohra) July 3, 2022

Cheteshwar Pujara returns with a half-century. Brilliant 50 👏

— Subhayan Chakraborty (@CricSubhayan) July 3, 2022

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